(photo credit: CBC)
The reigning NWHL MVP is returning to Toronto.
Mikyla Grant-Mentis, who took the league by storm in Lake Placid, is returning to the Toronto Six for her second season, aiming to build off of an all-around impressive performance during the team’s first year in the league.
The Brampton native was tied for the NWHL lead in scoring, registering nine points in six games in Lake Placid while also leading the league in goals with five. Adding a pair of points during the Isobel Cup Semifinals capped off a rookie season to remember for the 22-year old, who is now back home in Canada enjoying the offseason.
I recently spoke with Mikyla on the Get Your Head in the Game podcast and she provided an update on where her offseason training was at. “The offseason is going a little slow. We’re still in a pandemic and there’s not much going on”, she said, chuckling to herself as if it was common knowledge by now. “It’s pretty much just at-home workouts and rollerblading outside just trying to stay in the hockey groove”.
Grant-Mentis’ stellar season earned her both league MVP and Newcomer of the Year honours, simultaneously becoming the first Black player to earn both awards in NWHL history. While also being one of six recipients of the NWHL Foundation Award (awarded to players actively applying the core values of hockey to her community, as well as growing and improving hockey culture) and one of the Fans’ 3 Stars of the season, Grant-Mentis returned to Canada with a handful of hardware.
“With the headlines, awards, and media coverage, it’s been a huge self esteem boost. I’ve gotten a lot of younger girls, people that I’ve coached, reach out with positive messages”, said Grant-Mentis when I asked her about the impact she was making on the sport. “It’s a huge confidence boost for me and I hope I can spread what I’ve done to help build the game further”.
Mature beyond her years, Grant-Mentis’ return to Toronto brings with it new life and opportunity. After the team finished atop the league standings in their inaugural season, the Six fell short of an Isobel Cup Championship, falling to the eventual champion Boston Pride in the semifinals.
Now, with a full season in the works and fans (hopefully) entering the building, the Grant-Mentis signing brings a renewed sense of excitement to the city, where fans undoubtedly can’t wait to watch the Six hit the ice.